Community Gardening Update

Based on the survey results we’ve received so far, SNA is not endorsing a community garden in Lippitt Park at this time.  The neighborhood seems strongly in favor of Collyer Field as an alternate location, so we’re going to look into that option further, working in collaboration with neighbor, Greg Gerritt.  

Please join us at 6:00 on September 19 at Summit Commons, 99 Hillside Ave, to share your thoughts.

Report from the community gardening meeting

Last night at Summit Commons June Daniel presented her plan to create community gardening in Lippitt Park.  Also in attendance were eight neighbors, five of which are current SNA board members.  It is unfortunate that there was little notice about this meeting, but now that we are in contact with June, we will give advanced notice of these meetings as they get set.

June presented her ideas for the project, including potential locations in the park and the basic format, which would be modeled closely after the Sessions Street community garden of which she is a current member.  In essence, the city would bring water to the location, build a fence, and then allow land use rights to the community garden group.  The proposed area of the project would be 4,800 square feet.  The group would then lease the 10′ x 10′ plots to individuals who would use them to grow vegetables.  June said that the details of this arrangement are still in the works, but likely costs could be $100 for the first year and $35 for each additional year thereafter.  Members who have a plot in the current year get first right of refusal for a plot next year.  She reported that most other community gardens in the city have a waiting list.

Specific locations discussed included:

1. Southeast corner of the park

2. Southwest area where the Open Market is usually held

3. Northern point where the Farmer’s Market is usually held

Locations #2 and 3 above would have those markets moving elsewhere inside the park.  Everyone agreed that giving the Farmer’s Market first location choice is essential, as that market brings much enhancement to our neighborhood.

The neighbors present participated in the discussion, suggesting other locations in addition to Lippitt Park for consideration.  The group seemed split on whether Lippitt Park was an appropriate location for this type of activity, with perhaps a few more than half of those present thinking that it was not the best location.

Another location discussed was Collier Field, which perhaps has closer access to water and is a less-used location.

This project is something being pursued by June Daniel.  For its part, SNA hopes to gauge neighbors’ wants in this area and advocate accordingly.  To that end, there will be a survey created, as well as at least two additional public meetings.  Access to the survey will be made available on this site, on the SNA e-mail list, and in the next SNA newsletter for people without Internet access.  June has agreed to not pursue this project in Lippitt Park if it becomes clear that the neighborhood is against it.  It is difficult to get any accurate reading of neighborhood consensus, and the best methods discussed last night were through the survey and public meeting discussion.

So if you have an interest in this issue, please participate in one of those methods, if possible.  If you are unable, please do contact someone from SNA (sna@sna.providence.ri.us) to make your voice heard.  Of course, SNA is not the only way to weigh in here; the Parks Department and Mayor’s Office should also be willing to hear your voice on this issue.

The additional public meetings are set for September 26 and October 24 at 6pm. Location will be Summit Commons (99 Hillside Ave).

Take SNA’s 2009 Summit Issues Survey

What does your neighborhood need?  Help plan Summit Neighborhood Association’s activities for 2009 by taking SNA’s amazingly quick 2009 Community Issues Survey Click Here to take survey.

The top issues emerging from this survey will be discussed in detail at our 2009 Annual Meeting coming up on February 23 at 7pm at Summit Commons Nursing Home 99 Hillside Ave.

Build your social capital at SNA meeting Feb 25

Join us for the biggest neighborhood meeting of the year, the Annual Meeting of SNA members on Monday, Feb. 25 at 7PM at the Rochambeau Branch Library, 708 Hope Street.

We’ll review SNA activities, elect our new 2008 board and explore ways to build your non-monetary portfolio – your social capital account. The idea of social capital was popularized in Robert Putnam’s 1999 book Bowling Alone. (more…)

Service for Maryanne Flanagan Wednesday morning

On Friday, our dear friend and long-time Summit Neighborhood Association board colleague Maryanne Flanagan of Fourth Street passed away. A service of remembrance will be held this Wednesday, Dec. 7, at Swan Point Cemetery’s Redwood Chapel. Notice of Maryanne’s death appeared in this mornings Sunday Journal (Local News). You may send email condolences via the Russel Boyle Funeral Home.

Maryanne was a lifelong student and teacher, and a woman of gentle, deeply persistent courage. While her passing leaves us poorer, our entire community is richer for her life among us.

Maryanne’s commitment to community found expression in her faithful, never-failing service as Secretary to our board, as a thoughtful governor of the organization and strategist in our campaigns and as a hands-on activist always ready to make calls, write letters, knock on doors and speak at hearings.

Maryanne’s faith in her power as a citizen continued to the very end. Just last week, Maryanne considered with me whether she should sit in outside the door of our city building inspector, who has failed to respond to her numerous calls and letters on a certain neighborhood matter. (For all I know, Maryanne may have done just that.) Last Saturday, Maryanne submitted her Minutes for our November Board meeting.

Maryanne’s steadiness in the face of her illness perhaps lulled us into believing what we hoped: that she would overcome and remain our friend and colleague here forever. That could not be, but Maryanne’s memory and spirit will always strengthen those of us who knew her.

I hope that those of you who also knew Maryanne will respond to this post with your own remembrances and tributes.

SNA Board meeting Monday, Sept. 17

The Summit Neighborhood Association board will hold it’s monthly meeting on Monday, Sept. 17 at 7PM in the Community Room at the Rochambeau Library. The public is welcome to attend.
Agenda items will include:

Participation in the city’s three-neighborhood planning process for Summit, Mt. Hope and Blackstone the week of Sept. 24 through 29.

Update on the North Main Street project.

Key board and volunteer positions to be recruited.

If you have a matter you want raised at this meeting, please call Jonathan Howard at 331-2272 in advance.

Next SNA Board meeting July 16 – East Coast Greenway Project

Summit Neighborhood Association’s next public board meeting will be held Monday, July 16 at 7PM in the Community Room downstairs at the Rochambeau Branch of the Providence Public Library, 708 Hope Street.

Eric Weiss RI organizer of the East Coast Greenway Project will join us to talk about the future of bike routes on the East Side, including his proposal to make Blackstone Boulevard bike and pedestrian friendly. Blackstone will be the planned route connecting the Pawtucket end of the Lincoln Bike Path to India Point and the East Bay Bike Path.
Eric will also talk about the potential for bike lanes and off-road greenways along the North Main and Moshassuck River corridors. The Moshassuck, which runs through North Burial Ground and along Rt. 95 was the actual path of the old Blackstone Canal which the Lincoln path follows for most of its length.

For more information, or to request time on the agenda, please call Jonathan Howard 331.2272.